The sport of triathlon has arrived in full force in the bustling province of Saskatchewan. Some of the best triathletes on the planet will make their way to Saskatoon this coming Sunday June 30 for the inaugural Subaru Saskatoon Triathlon.
This is the first time that Saskatchewan has hosted a triathlon event on a major Series. This race is the largest triathlon ever held in the history of Saskatchewan drawing participants from all over Canada. There are over 700 participants in the different events with over 500 individual triathletes racing on Sunday morning. 26 age-group athletes will qualify to represent Canada in Edmonton next year for the 2014 World Triathlon Championships in the Olympic distance division. The event also plays host to the Saskatchewan Olympic distance Provincial Championships.
TSN, Canada’s Sport Leader, will broadcast the event nationally in a 60 minute post produced program. The professional race features the “Chase Format.”
The “Chase Format” gives the women’s pro field a head start with the pro men starting a designated time behind. First one to the finish line is the Champion – man or woman. The Champions from the last two years; two-time Olympian Brent McMahon and Ironman 70.3 Champion Magali Tisseyre are all set to battle it out – both just finished second at Ironman 70.3 Mont-Tremblant last weekend. Magali took the title for the women last year in Sooke, BC, holding off Ironman 70.3 World Championship podium-finisher Jeff Symonds. Brent McMahon took it for the men the year before. This is first time the 2 have raced head to head. Some of the Pro Chase field is as follows:
- Brent McMahon (Victoria) – Olympian (Athens and London)
- Magali Tisseyre (Quebec) – 2 time Ironman 70.3 podium finisher
- Lisa Mensink (Netherlands) – Olympian (Beijing)
- Jeff Symonds (Penticton) – Ironman 70.3 World Championship podium finisher
- Andrew Russell (Sidney)- National World Cup Team 2012
- Sarah Gross (Victoria) – 2nd at Ironman Brazil 2013
- Janet Nielsen (Victoria) – former National U23 Team Member
- Abby Miller (Saskatoon) – Saskatchewan 2009 Female Junior Athlete of the Year
The Saskatoon Triathlon will also feature a large amateur component with many local participants and many completing their very first triathlon. This race will also double as the Saskatchewan provincial triathlon championship, with one spot in each amateur age, 24 in total, qualifying for the Canadian National Team that will compete at the world championships in Edmonton in 2014. The event is nearly sold out with only a few entries remaining.
The Saskatoon Triathlon is the latest addition to the Western Triathlon Series that features five exciting events hosted in beautiful locations across Canada’s west coast and Rocky Mountains and now in Saskatchewan. The event will feature swimming at Pike Lake Provincial Park, followed by a bicycle ride into Saskatoon along scenic country roads. The final leg of the race will have participants running to the finish in the heart of downtown via the Meewasin Valley Trail.
Make sure to visit Tourism Saskatoon to find out more about this great city.